Community News

In Monthly Newsletter, Alexandria’s Mayor Reveals Project Along Potomac River Shoreline to Address Flooding

Photo: Maggie Nicoletti/Zebra Press file photo

ALEXANDRIA, VA-Flooding is a continuing problem in Alexandria. In the April edition of the Council Connection newsletter, Mayor Justin Wilson documents the progress of the city’s mitigation efforts. Chief among these is a project planned for the Potomac River shoreline. It will address the backflow of river outfalls, the overtopping of bulkheads, and overflow from storm sewers.

The city has an interim agreement with contractor Skanksa/JMT. In March, the firm provided a draft of its findings, which includes environmental studies and structural investigations.  The project model, Progressive Design-Build, defined by documention at, “uses a qualifications-based or best value. selection, followed by a process whereby the owner then ‘progresses’ towards a contract price with the team (thus the term ‘Progressive’).” This method, according to the mayor, will decrease cost and risk by “eliminating underground storage and redesigning the pump station plan.”

The firm offered a more targeted plan as well that places new bulkheads along the shoreline. Wilson did not provide a cost for the project.

Inland flooding is also addressed in the newsletter. The mayor said that to prevent damage and financial loss to residents and business owners, these areas require “immediate and sustained action”:

  • Infrastructure investment and maintenance
  • Financial and technical assistance to residents
  • Development policy reform

Wilson said that another increase in the city’s Stormwater Utility Fee, as outlined in the proposed budget of City Manager Jim Parajon, will “further increase the resources available for investments in our storm sewer infrastructure.”

The annual free for condos will be $90.75, $136.12 for townhomes, $324.10 for small single-family homes, and $541.25 for large single-family homes. A Feb. 27 report in The Zebra said City Council will vote on the budget May 1.

River Renew Digging Ends

In related news, digging is complete on the River Renew project, begun more than two and a half years ago to keep stormwater and sewage from going into the Potomac and other waterways. The digging was concentrated on a 540-acre area in Old Town. The project used a 380-ton Tunnel Boring Machine, which dug from the AlexRenew facility at 1800 Limerick St. to the shaft at Pendleton St.- a journey of 2.2 miles.

On Saturday, April 13, the public is invited to an Open House at 501 N. Union Street, celebrating the project’s end. To learn more, click HERE.

[SEE ALSO: Northern Virginia Solar Energy Program Celebrating 10 Years]

Kevin Dauray

Kevin is Publisher's Assistant with The Zebra Press. He has been working for Alexandria's "Good News" newspaper since 2019. A graduate of George Mason University, he earned a bachelor's in English with a concentration in Creative Writing. He also studied at the Columbia School of Broadcasting and holds a master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Marymount University. He is an alumnus of T.C. Williams High School. Go Titans!

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